The article below originally appeared on MercuryNews.com and is being reprinted with permission.
When aluminum bats were introduced into college baseball, the change was drastic.
For example, take College of San Mateo, which has hit three home runs in 26 games — all of them courtesy of freshman outfielder Tyler Carlson. Opponents are having a harder time clearing the fence against the Bulldogs (15-9), who have allowed one homer so far.
“The power numbers, they’re a thing of the past with these bats,” CSM coach Doug Williams said. “I think we went 12 games before we saw our first home run on either side of the ball. … I think Mike Looney hit 25 home runs when he was here in one year and I don’t think there’s a team that is going to come close to that.”
Mooney was drafted by the San Francisco Giants in the 16th round of the 2003 draft.
Without his type of production in the lineup, CSM has used its legs to manufacture runs. Freshman shortstop Miles Mastrobuoni has swiped 18 bags, while he’s been caught stealing once.
“He’s quite an instinctive player and he can run,” Williams said. “It’s something that we had known about early and we identified.”
Mastrobuoni hit third in the lineup during Sunday’s 3-0 win over West Valley, which pushed the Bulldogs into a second-place tie in the Coast Golden Gate at 9-3 — two games behind Chabot.
But one of CSM’s strengths is its flexibility, which always gives Williams something to think about.
“It’s kind of fun to tinker with the lineup when you have different matchups,” Williams said.
As usual, the CSM track and field team has a number of standouts on the throws. St. Francis-Mountain View graduate Scott Chisea ranks second in the state in the javelin, while teammate Aaron Volkman leads the Coast Conference in the shot and hammer. On the women’s side, Moreen Pahulu sits atop the conference in the javelin, hammer and discus — ranking second in the state in the discus.The track portion of the team got some rough news in October when sprinter Ryan Batte broke his leg while training.”It’s been a little bit of an up-and-down year on the track,” CSM coach Joe Mangan said.
In the pool, CSM freshman Kawei Tan is seeded among the top five in the state in a quintet of events — though he can only compete in three individual events at the state meet on the first weekend of May.”He’s got a pretty good chance of being a state champion,” CSM coach Randy Wright said. “With having five options, we’re going to pick the three that he’s closest to being a champion in.”Meanwhile, the NorCal Diving Championships will be held April 12 at De Anza College in Cupertino. CSM sophomore Erin Harris was a state qualifier last year.